Babcock International, the Aerospace and Defence company, has welcomed 194 new apprentices and graduates to its Devonport site, as the business develops its next generation.
Following a comprehensive application process, including assessment centres and interviews, Babcock’s 2019 intake of apprentices and graduates have now joined the team. The 125 apprentices – double last year’s intake – will fulfil a variety of roles, including Welding; Electrical, Mechanical and Marine Pipe Fitting; and Fabricating at Devonport Royal Dockyard, and our 69 graduates will work across multiple professions.
The apprentices have embarked on an exciting four-year programme. During their first year, those focusing on engineering related roles learn basic trade skills and earn their City & Guilds engineering qualification Level 2 at City College Plymouth. Those working in office-based roles stay on site and carry out a series of placements in a variety of departments while studying for NVQ qualifications. Their year ends with a series of community based projects and team building events on Dartmoor.
Graduate numbers have also risen this year and the 69 new starters – half of whom have studied to undergraduate level, while the other half are postgraduates – have recently started their two-year development programme. Throughout the 24 months, they study a number of placements in their areas of specialism – from supply chain and project management, to engineering – and bring a wealth of knowledge from their degree subjects, which include geography, english and engineering related disciplines.
New apprentice, Carla Tippett, has joined Babcock as a Support Engineer, and said: “I’ve had a variety of part-time jobs and also studied a two year business qualification at college. I chose to apply to Babcock because they are a well-known international company with an excellent reputation. My uncle also works at Devonport Dockyard and recommended the apprenticeship scheme to me. I am really looking forward to starting my apprenticeship, being trained and developing my skills.
Mike Homer, MD of Devonport Royal Dockyard, added: “A very warm welcome to all of our new starters. The calibre of our candidates was extremely high again this year and we are delighted to be offering so many apprentices and graduates the opportunity to start their career with us in a variety of areas – double the number we took on in 2018.
“The number of females entering engineering disciplines continues to increase year-on-year, which is very encouraging. These new entrants are our engineers and business leaders of the future, and I wish them long and prosperous careers with Babcock. Building our talent pool is really important to us, as we need to develop and retain so many specialist engineering and business skills.”
Employee development remains an important focus for Babcock, which includes supporting the development of future talent through its apprentice and graduate programmes.